Museums

Thompsonville Historic Museum

Address:
3620 Main St
Thompsonville, IL 62890
Phone:
Map:

Come see pioneer architecture and building techniques in this log cabin, still standing today. It was built in 1825 by Nathaniel Jones. This rustic, "as is" log cabin is almost 200 years old. While it has recently received maintenance repairs to the roof and front porch, it has not been remodeled or updated. The log cabin has no electricity or running water. It is sparsely furnished but does have an old unique upright piano. The stairs to the second story are rough and narrow. Be careful when visiting. This authentic log cabin is not like other museums or recreations. It has no safety additions. 


Admission is free and donations are accepted. Open by appointment only. Call to schedule a tour. 

Please verify before travel. This information is provided as a courtesy and is subject to change.


The Thompsonville Historic Museum is only 15 miles southeast of Rend Lake, just off IL State Highway 14.

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West Franklin County Museum

Address:
2130 School House Rd
Mulkeytown, IL 62865
Phone:
Website:
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The West Franklin County Museum is located in a former Mulkeytown school building. It contains artifacts, memorabilia, and hundreds of photographs, which depict lifestyles and the people from the early days of Franklin County. The one room school house display, the train room, and a rock and mineral collection are each a special interest. 

It has a large multi-purpose area where community groups come together for fundraisers and fun. The meals and seasonal craft fairs are all refreshing events that have a feel of the past and shows off this local community's pride, fellowship and willingness to work. The West Franklin County Museum is only 1 mile from the Silkwood Inn Museum. Make 1 trip and visit 2 museums, just call ahead to schedule.


Admission Free / Donations Accepted

Call to schedule a tour or to check event schedules and seasonal hours.

Please verify before travel. This information is provided as a courtesy and is subject to change.


The West Franklin County Museum is only 10 miles southwest of beautiful Rend Lake, just south of IL-14 on IL-184.

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1910 Franklin County Garage & Auto Museum

Address:
211 North Main St
Benton, IL 62812
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Facebook:
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The original building was constructed in 1910 as a Ford franchise and garage. It has been restored to its original condition and still has 2 sets of garage pulley systems that were used to power several mechanical devices. It has vintage signs and a clock-face gas pump. The list of vintage cars includes a 1912 Model T "Huckster" that belonged to gangster, Charlie Birger, the last convicted criminal to be hanged in Illinois, a 1914 Model T Touring Vehicle, a 1916 Dort Automobile, a 1926 Model T "Doctor's Coup" Automobile, a 1928 Chevrolet Roadster, a 1931 Hupmobile, a carriage from the 1880s and more. 


Admission Free / Donations Accepted


Call or check website for seasonal hours. Please verify before travel. This information is provided as a courtesy and is subject to change.


The 1910 Franklin County Garage & Auto Museum is only 5 miles south of Rend Lake and just North of the Benton Square on IL 37 and 14.

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Old Franklin County Jail Museum

Address:
209 West Main St
Benton, IL 62812
Phone:
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The 1905 Franklin County Jail Museum was added to the National Register of Historic Places in 1999. The displays in this amazing museum houses memorabilia from The Beatles' George Harrison's first trip to the United States to visit his sister Louise in Benton Illinois, to actor John Malkovich, basketball star Doug Collins, Civil War General John A. Logan and gangster Charlie Birger, the last convicted criminal to be hanged in Illinois. See actual jail cells used to house Charlie Birger and a replica of the noose and gallows used to hang him. .


Admission $4.00 / Donations Accepted 

Please verify before travel. This information is provided as a courtesy and is subject to change.


The 1905 Franklin County Jail Museum is only 5 miles south of Rend Lake, just West of the Benton Square on IL 14

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Silkwood Inn Museum

Address:
7570 Mulkeytown Rd
Mulkeytown, IL 62865
Phone:
Website:
Map:

The Silkwood Inn was built in 1827 by Brazilla Silkwood on the Shawneetown-Kaskaskia- St. Louis Trail. It served as a home for his family and also an Inn for travelers. A tour through this amazing Inn includes the telling of a famous legend based both in fact and local folklore. While on a business trip to the south, Brazilla met a slave girl named Priscilla. Then in 1838 Priscilla was traveling through Jonesboro Illinois as the property of a Native American Chief on the Trail of Tears. When Brazilla saw her as part of the Trail of Tears, he bought her and set her free to live as a member of his family until her death in 1892.


Admission Free / Donations Accepted 

Call to schedule a tour or to check event schedules and seasonal hours. 

Please verify before travel. This information is provided as a courtesy and is subject to change.


The Silkwood Inn is only 10 miles southwest of Rend Lake, off IL State Highway 14. 

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Rend Lake Tourism